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Home > News > Vibration White Finger Compensation For Breaches Of Regulations

11th November 2008

Vibration White Finger Compensation For Breaches Of Regulations

Our client was diagnosed with vibration white finger in 2005, although he had unknowingly been suffering from mild symptoms of Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome for several years prior to that. He asked for our personal injury compensation claim advice regarding a possible claim for VWF compensation against his employer, for whom he had worked since leaving school some 20 or more years before the onset of his industrial disease.

Working With Vibrating Tools

As a road worker, he had used a variety of power and pneumatic tools, including air drills, jackhammers, stihl saws and compactors that are used for compacting stone and tarmac. For many years he operated one or more of these items of power or pneumatic equipment for long periods each day, and for most of this time did not take formal breaks. He merely stopped the machines for a few minutes for a short break before carrying on with his work.

Symptoms of Vibration White Finger, or Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome

When he first became aware of something wrong with his hands, the symptoms were very mild and he did not initially realise that it could be a serious condition such as a VWF injury. Indeed he was not aware that there was such a condition. He would suffer occasional numbness in one of his fingers, and the tip of one of his fingers would very occasionally turn white. He would quickly shake his finger, which allowed the colour and feeling to return.

However, a few years later, his symptoms had increased significantly and because of his vibration white finger injury, all his fingers were turning white when it was cold. As they warmed up, they were very painful.

Although he had mentioned his symptoms several times over the years to the occupational health staff, it was not until he attended a general check-up with an occupational health doctor that his concerns led to his referral to a specialist in industrial injury, who immediately diagnosed vibration white finger in both hands.

He now continues to suffer with symptoms in all fingers, which go white and numb when cold, and then feel hot, tingly and painful when they start to recover. He frequently wears gloves, even when most people would consider them unnecessary. He feels clumsy when trying to do simple tasks such as doing up buttons or shoelaces, and picking up small objects is difficult.

Our client has now been advised that his use of vibrating tools should be restricted and this would mean he would be at a disadvantage in the labour market.

Breach of Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1992

Although our client had several times mentioned the symptoms in his hands to the occupational staff, no mention had been made on any occasion of the possibility that he might be suffering from vibration white finger, or hand arm vibration syndrome.

The defendant was negligent in that at no time did he advise our client of the risks of developing VWF. Nor had he advised our client of the symptoms he should be aware of, which might have indicated that he had developed vibration white finger.

The defendant also failed to provide a safe system of working, such as a rotation system, which would have allowed our client to take regular and sufficient breaks to minimise the risk of developing Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome

It was not until 2005 that the tools owned by the defendant were tested and tagged with recommended time limits for their use, too late to prevent the damage to our client. This was clearly in breach of both the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1992, and the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992.

Vibration White Finger Compensation

Our specialist personal injury solicitors, who have vast experience in dealing with all types of industrial diseases, fought hard to ensure our client received his rightful compensation from his employer. They were able to secure a substantial settlement in vibration white finger compensation for our client.

Vibration White Finger Compensation Claim

Clear Answers’ lawyers have a reputation for obtaining the maximum personal injury compensation for people who suffer from an industrial disease such as vibration white finger or hand arm vibration syndrome. If you have developed an industrial disease as a result of negligence by an employer, our teams of experts are waiting to help you, should you decide to instruct us to represent you in your claim.

We will be happy to provide you with expert legal advice, to answer any questions you may have regarding your industrial disease claim and to talk you through the claims process in plain English.

Please ring us on 0800 783 9019 and speak to one of our advisers if you or a family member is suffering or has suffered from an industrial disease.

Alternatively, a representative will contact you as soon as possible if you complete one of our on-line compensation claim forms.

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